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First Officer Jobs


Frequently asked questions

First Officer Pilot jobs are highly demanding in nature, requiring years of education and training. After an undergraduate degree in air transport or the likes of it, one is required to clear tests and earn relevant certifications, like private and commercial pilot certificates, in order to gain the necessary flying hours to become a first officer. If you want to know how to become a first officer, having a certain set of technical skills is also a must. 

After graduating from a flying school, you'll earn a Commercial Pilot Licence (CPL) and an Instrumental Rating (IR). These two combine to form a 'frozen ATPL'. At this stage you can apply for openings as a first officer. After the completion of 1,500 flying hours, the ATPL can unfreeze and you are eligible to start applying for the captain jobs in airlines.

With the mushroom demand for Pilots in aviation, there has been a boom in the first officer recruitment. They get paid handsomely and fairly for flying the aircraft. Even though the salary depends upon various factors like the type of employer, aircraft or the routes taken by them, the average salary is usually satisfactory.

A First Officer assists the captain during the landing, take-off, and the whole flight. They also take the place of captain in case they are unable to fly the plane due to any reason. A First Officer supervises and inspects the aircraft for any potential malfunction. Copilot jobs also involve communicating with the air traffic control during the flight.

Individual who opts for a copilot career is the second pilot or the first officer (FO) of an aircraft. After the captain, who is the commander of the aircraft, they are the ones who are in command, often assuming the role of the captain. The distribution of control over the aircraft is shared normally between the captain and the first officer.

Yes, Co-pilots and Pilots of aircraft are among the highest paying jobs; they fall in the top 20 highest paying careers globally in 2022.

Yes, Besides the domestic flights, as a first officer on international flights, you get to see many different countries and cultures; it’s an exciting career.

If you have a job with a good commercial airline, you can expect stays at some of the most coveted hotels at your destination.

If you’re part of a good airline company, you can expect regular training and a chance to learn new skills. In your progression to full-time captain of your plane, you will need leadership and critical decision-making skills. Plus, as your airline upgrades its aeroplanes, you’ll learn to fly the latest commercial aircraft in the aviation industry.

Need we mention the food on a flight is free for the staff.


First Officer Job Description 

A first officer is fundamentally the second pilot or the copilot of an aircraft. Their duties and control over the aircraft resemble that of the captain, but differ in that they guide and assist the captain during a normal flight, and coordinate directly with the control towers. They steadily coordinate between air traffic controllers and the captain, inspecting the aircraft to make sure there aren’t any faulty parts. In case of the captain’s incapacitation, they take full control over flying the aircraft. First officer jobs also involve managing the aircraft operations during an emergency situation. You can get more information regarding the latest first officer openings on Aviation Job Search.

First Officer Job Responsibilities

First officer pilot jobs are quite challenging, demanding a combination of both educational competence, and technical knowledge. They coordinate with the Captain of the aircraft in managing the aircraft operations and communicate with the air traffic controller to take the directions. The first officer drafts the flight plan along with the Captain prior to the takeoff and also takes control of flying whenever required. First officers are certified pilots who inform the captain of any anomalies in flight operations. So, before applying for first officer vacancies, individuals should keep in mind that they meet all the criteria. If you want to avail such opportunities,visit the Aviation Job Search

Skills Required For Building First Officer Career

As much as a good educational background and training is required to get into a copilot career, these alone just aren’t enough. Operation monitoring, technical dexterity, active listening, critical thinking and complex problem-solving are the key skills required for a first officer’s career. One needs to multitask as a copilot. Coordinating with air traffic controllers, guiding the captain, inspecting any potential dangers, and being on the guard for any unexpected situation are some of the tasks that a first officer undertakes all at once. Patience and great attention to detail is also required in order to fly the aircraft safely and efficiently. 

Training to Become a First Officer Pilot

The first step is finding a suitable flying or pilot training school. They usually offer integrated and modular professional flight training. The integrated courses allow trainee pilots without previous flying experience to obtain their ATPL in 18 months. The classes are rigorous, and you must complete the training in one go. The integrated courses combine both theory and flying experience. Modular training, as its name implies, is done in segments. This allows trainees to work alongside their studies and pay the course fees. To qualify for a modular training program, you must have a Private Pilot Licence and 150 hours of flying experience. This option is cheaper than the integrated one but takes more time to complete. 

Getting A First Officer Pilot’s Degree

Although aviation degrees are not essential, many universities offer relevant courses. Bucks New University offers a BSc. in Air Transport and Commercial Pilot Training, and Kingston University, London, has a BSc in Aviation Operations and Commercial Pilot Training. These courses can both be completed in three years. However, the Kingston course can take a sandwich year, making it a 4-year program. 

Essential Things to Know About First Officer Job

Although getting a first officer job is the best thing to happen to aspiring pilots, the road isn’t easy. First, it is expensive to become a pilot; the training is costly and rigorous. Secondly, you need to be ready to stay away from home frequently. It might be easy for a single person, but those with families report domestic issues. Thirdly and most importantly, the Level of responsibility is very high; being a first officer pilot has its perks, no doubt, and excellent wages, but with great salary comes great responsibility. You and your captain are responsible for the lives of all the people on the plane. So you need nerves of steel since the slightest mistake at a critical point can be fatal for you and everyone onboard.